Check Out the Cool Patch of William Penn the Phillies Used to Have on Their Jerseys

phillies-patch

Last night, I attended a talk at Fleischer Art Memorial about “The Art and Design of Sports Uniforms.” It was done by Peter Capolino, the man who turned Mitchell & Ness form a sporting goods manufacturer into the retro jersey fashion behemoth it is today.

It was pretty cool! Did you know the team didn’t always have a ‘P’ on its cap? Or that baseball jerseys were so baggy because they were wool flannel and would shrink over the course of a season? Well, maybe you did, but I didn’t. What most intrigued me was the above logo, which the Phillies wore on the sleeve of their jerseys in the 1938 season. Though the Phillies wore a blue and yellow jersey to celebrate the tricentennial of the founding of New Sweden and lost 105 games, they did have this patch. Per Sportslogos.net, this patch was once the primary logo of the team!

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The Joy of a Phillies Game, Even When They Stink

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One of my favorite memories of attending a Phillies game was on September 4, 1999. I was a senior in high school, and a group of us traveled down I-95 to the game. It was a Saturday night. I probably had a cross country meet that morning. This was a chance to relax.

More than 14 years on, I’ve forgotten many of the details. I just remember being so excited. School must have just started, and I was finally coming into my own senior year. Or, well, at least I thought I was. I was eager for my final year of high school. That night at the Phillies, my friends and I goofed around in a mostly-empty 700 Level. We went to a friend’s house in Oxford Circle afterward and hung in her basement. I probably stayed out too late for a cross-country runner. You know, high school stuff. It is just a fond memory.

The Phillies did not have their best day. The Reds set a still-standing National League record for most home runs in a game (9!) in a 22-3 thrashing of the Fightins. (After the first inning, the Phillies were ahead 2-0.) When the Reds’ 9-run fifth inning finally ended, the fans erupted in a standing Bronx cheer.

It didn’t matter that the Phillies were 17 games back after the game. We had a good time. We had all grown up in Philadelphia, so we were used to the Phillies stinking. The Phillies were 68-67 after that 22-3 loss. That’s not so bad!

What’s nice about baseball is it’s a picnic. The Phillies may have given up three home runs to Ryan Braun in a 10-4 loss in their home opener, but I still had a good time at the game yesterday. I tailgated with friends in the parking lot beforehand. I met my uncle, a man who’s taken me to scores of Phillies games in my life, and we sat in his season ticket seats. I listened to him wax nostalgic on Phillies teams in games past — ”Since the Vet opened, I’ve only missed about three home openers,” he bragged — and we drank beers and sighed as the Brewers scored another run. I ran into friends I hadn’t seen in forever. I updated an old boss on my life. I actually walked back to downtown up 10th Street because it was nice out, and a friend suggested we walk. Why has no one asked me to do this before? I wondered aloud.

The Phillies lost, 10-4. Nothing especially notable happened; most of the things I did yesterday weren’t new. They were routines I’d done before and will do again. But it was just so great to do them all again. The Phillies don’t look like they’ll be very good this year. But trips to the ballpark seem like they’ll be just as good as ever.

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Citizens Bank Park: A Decade in the Stadium We Didn’t Want

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Out at home? CBP attendance dropped last season. Photograph: Aero-Imaging, Inc./Newscom

The first 10 years of Citizens Bank Park, I think we can all agree, have been pretty great. Five division titles. Eight winning seasons. One magical night in October 2008. Many fans will claim 11th and Pattison as hallowed ground long after global warming turns it into a beach.

But do you remember when the decision to build in South Philly seemed like not just a defeat — but a complete failure of civic imagination? In the early days of the debate on replacing Veterans Stadium, folks were hot for a Camden Yards-style retro park smack-dab in the middle of downtown. Fans whimsically debated putting a new park at the old Schmidt’s brewery, near 30th Street Station, even on the waterfront. Politicians talked more realistically about two locations: North Broad at Spring Garden, and in Chinatown at 12th and Vine.

But each proposed site was eventually sunk by some combination of community or political NIMBYism and logistical or infrastructural clusterfuckery. So the new stadium arose in the shadow of the old one, in the expanse of parking lots and nothingness we call, as if it were an affliction, the “sports complex.”

When the Phils were the best team in town, it didn’t much matter where their stadium was. But last year, attendance dropped by half a million fans. And we may face another dismal August in South Philly. It’s worth asking: Did we blow it?

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Roy Halladay Suggests Someone Start a ‘Zoo with Kyle’ Website

Retired ex-Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay has a Twitter account, and he’s finally letting on that he knows about a certain delightfully strange Philly sports website.

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Ex-Phillie Dykstra: I Was Beaten in Jail

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Hey, remember the 1993 Phillies? Weren’t they great? That team of roided-up, beer-swilling everybodies almost won the World Series! Sure, they lost to a team in Canada in the end, but we’ll always have the memories. Hey, the star of that team was Lenny Dysktra! Hit .305, slugged .482, led the league in hits and runs and walks and only didn’t win MVP because the greatest baseball player ever won it. He’s in the news again, as you can see from the cool screenshot above. Wonder why he’s wearing that hat?

Anyway, what’s our ol’ pal Lenny Dykstra been up to?

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Vote for Donovan McNabb as the NFL’s Greatest Quarterback!

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March is over! The best part about this is not the nicer (“nicer”) weather or the sunnier days. No, the best part is a dramatic reduction of brackets.

To decide the best team of the 68 who qualify for its postseason tournament, the NCAA uses a bracket. It is a good way to whittle down the top 68 teams to just 1! Single-game elimination is not the most fair way to decide a champion, but 68 teams is too many to hold round-robin groups or a bunch of best-of series.

For some reason, the media finds March a great time to hold brackets of everything. Drugs versus Alcohol, from Jezebel. The fucking Philadelphia sports media, from Crossing Broad. A bracket of brackets, from Sportsgrid. The fucking White House did a fucking animated GIF bracket.

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Jimmy Rollins on Philly Fans: ‘If You’re Soft, They’ll Wring You Out’

After his grand slam in Monday’s thrilling 14-10 Opening Day win for the Phillies, Jimmy Rollins had some thoughts on the city and the team. I’m going to embed a tweet so it’s in a giant font right here.

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The Phillies’ Amazing Opening-Day Win in 12 GIFs

Baseball is back! And yesterday was an incredible start for the Phillies, as they walloped the Rangers by a football-like 14-10 score. It was an incredible start to a season filled with low expectations.

So, why not recap it with a few animated GIFs! There was plenty to get excited about during Monday’s big win.

1-howard-walk

Yes, the first big highlight of the season was a walk. Ryan Howard has averaged 81 walks over a 162-game season for his career, so it’s not really surprising he drew a base on balls here. But look what it led to!

2-asche-hit

Yeah, it led to a run. And to the always-excellent scene of Ryan Howard rounding third base. Maybe Howard could’ve been a two-sport athlete: Get him going in open space and who’s going to tackle him? Howard finished 2-for-5 with 3 strikeouts.

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There Is No Reason “Amateur” Athletes Shouldn’t Be Paid

Kentucky's Marcus Lee, left, and Michigan's Jordan Morgan go after a rebound during the first half of an NCAA Midwest Regional final college basketball tournament game Sunday, March 30, 2014, in Indianapolis. Photo | Michael Conroy, Associated Press

Kentucky’s Marcus Lee, left, and Michigan’s Jordan Morgan go after a rebound during the first half of an NCAA Midwest Regional final college basketball tournament game Sunday, March 30, 2014, in Indianapolis. Photo | Michael Conroy, Associated Press

Like Kurtis Blow, basketball is my favorite sport. I, too, like the way they dribble up and down the court.

Basketball’s a sport I enjoy at every level. I love the NFL, but I don’t care much for college football. Minor league baseball is even more boring than major league baseball. But I could watch pretty much every level of basketball: High-level NBA games on TV. Big 5 games at the Palestra. High school games in crumbling Philly gyms. Pick-up games on 10th Street. Little kid games at halftime of the Sixers. Everything is great!

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